Thursday, June 13, 2013

A New Cat in a New World

Bear-Bear is adjusting well to living with me and the perma-cats, but I think he is having a bit of a reaction. I’ve seen this in other felines when they come to stay with me, either temporarily or otherwise. They often appear adventurous, friendly, inquisitive at first, and then suffer a bit of a relapse, turning a little melancholy or even depressed. The reaction varied greatly among the cats I’ve observed.

My first cat, Tungsten, explored a bit when she first came to live with me, looking into this, looking into that. Then she retreated to the bedroom and lie on the bed for the rest of the day. But that night, she slept with me and was fine in the morning. Tucker, on the other hand, became so distraught at being put in a new setting that he stopped eating, and had to be force-fed (it sounds worse than it is) for almost a week. Then, he too, recovered and became the happy little sausage he remains.

No matter the environment from which the cats come, no matter where they find themselves, being wrenched from the only home they’ve known, at least for some years, is a big adjustment. Others must learn to be indoor-only cats, after a period outside, with all its freedoms and dangers. One can be homesick for surroundings that were indifferent, even unpleasant. The attraction of the familiar can be as strong, if not stronger, than the advantages of a better life.

Bear-Bear has been a cheerful, easy-going fellow since he came to stay with me. But I’ve noticed that he is a little quieter now, and has resorted sometimes to a corner of the siting room behind a cat-tree. Other times, he lies on my lap, plays and wanders about talking. I think he is feeling a little neglected. I intend to spend more time with him, especially in the evenings, inviting him to play and sit with me. The perma-cats know my routines, and have their own. They seek me out when they want attention, knowing that I rarely deny it to them, even if it’s only a few minutes’ petting. Bear-Bear doesn’t know he can do this.

I think I will also try to encourage him to sleep in the bedroom, possibly as a precursor to sleeping on the bed. There may be room for one more there… I will get a comfortable cat-bed for him and see if he will consent to sleep there on the floor. Later, he can work his way up to the bed. I think that last night, he slept on the cat-tree by the window, not an uncomfortable spot, and one from which he can view the nightscape outside when he wishes. But it made me think that he must be feeling a little of an outsider, which I don’t want.

I will also keep an eye on his health. He is an unknown quantity to me and therefore needs extra watching and a little more attention than the others. I believe he’s a naturally happy boy, and requires only small things to stay that way: a full tummy, a soft bed and affection. But I suppose that’s all most of us need.


  1. Bear-Bear, you probably are just wondering why you aren't going back to your home. It does sound like you are a nice cat and maybe you are just beginning to relax and that is why you are a little quieter.

  2. purrs to Bear - all that change is so hard - and we can't explain we are trying to help...

    By the way - everytime I see your header I want to kiss Tucker on the nose (just sayin')

  3. I hope he'll be just fine. He's lucky to have a good foster human. :-)

    It was easy for me in this regard: Chumley was estimated to be between 2 - 3 when I adopted him, but he came into a home without any other animals. He was King from the get-go.

    Annie seemed happy too, and other than eating almost non-stop for a while, she had no real adjustment, or certainly didn't seem to.

    And of course the current boys were fine, being so young (6 months). Either that or I just got lucky where they were concerned.

  4. He is a little darling! He looks a lot like Flynn and sounds very sensitive like him too. Flynn has always been vocal but when Eric died he would walk around the garden continually yelling loudly. At night he stopped sleeping on the bed and would sleep alone in his hammock. We gave him lots of extra loving and he has eventually settled back to near normal. In the second photo Bear Bear looks so much like Flynn that I want to pick him up and cuddle him.

  5. We settle down a bit when the pecking order is set
    We think

  6. Hiya,
    Bear Bear is so sweet looking... praying for him to adjust with his new Mommy.

    While going through the "spam" comment filter thingy, I found out that you commented on my blog over a year ago in March 2012, about Princess the Persian. She did indeed recover well from her neglect and found the bestest home as an only girl. Her new Mom travels a lot and wanted a companion to go with her. Princess loves to travel in cars, so last Fall, when Princess met her new Mom in her Studio hotel room, she couldn't be happier. After checking out the whole room, she jumped on the bed, relaxed and settled in like she was the little Queen of her palace!

    Last time I heard from her new Mommy, Princess had to have a tooth pulled, which stopped her runny eye problem! Princess, now Whiskers and her new Mom are having a purrfect time together!

    Katie Kat.

    1. I'm glad Princess / Whiskers is doing well. Thank you for letting me know. Computers are frustrating things. I have been able to reply to you - and add to my blog - since I installed a new search programme a few days ago. Maddening!

  7. Bear-Bear is a nice looking cat. It seems to me he's finding his place in the household. I hope it all works out as he's a lovely cat and lucky to have a great Mom!